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Old 07-04-2008, 06:25   #136
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Zach - great post. Now do two things to help yourself: (1) print and copy what you wrote here, keep it close and read it at least twice a month forever; this will help to keep you on course and isolated from the many siren temptations that will try to sway you, and (2) cherish and keep forever that lovely old Pearson and that 1971 VW Bus; these are all you will ever need to do well in life. Good luck, keep us posted.

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Old 07-04-2008, 07:12   #137
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Originally Posted by Zach View Post
Iíll be the first in generations to have gone without making a splash. Iím the first son in quite a few, that hasnít striven for a better life than what my father provided me,
Your life will make a better 'splash'. And you are striving for a life better than you Dad was abe to give you.

Good luck to you and how many who read your story will wish they ad your thoughts at your age.


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Old 07-04-2008, 07:51   #138
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I didn't have an epiphany so much as a gradual but exponential increase in interest. The fascination started with stories--from Odysseus to Columbus to Shackleton, always the best adventures are at sea and on secluded islands. It represents a liminal point, the threshold of human experience, or the Twilight Zone if you will...

Also, I'm not a fan of the prevailing consumer culture of the Unites States, and the values of people who aspire to buy huge houses and spend all their time and money manicuring a worthless green lawn, or working to afford the newest car to impress the Joneses. At least part of my interest in sailing lies in my intense desire to escape what I consider to be the insanity of human culture and society....
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Old 07-04-2008, 08:00   #139
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That was a great post Zach..

Don't be so sure that you'll not have anyone there "at the end of the day". Read my last post in Women Afloat.

Make sure you do a complete interview and sea trial before you let her board.'ve nailed the wear and tear on your health just perfectly. In my line of work, I see guys with big money needing big healthcare. Trust me, if they could, they'd trade off in an instance.

Good Luck !
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Old 25-05-2008, 13:18   #140
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This has certainly been a thread with legs. I think I may have recounted this on another thread but I am inspired to share it again.
2 epiphanies really.
#1. Tied up in a slip at Watergate Marina in Clear Lake TX. I was working on saving some $$$ for the cruise kitty and was planning on doing so for another six months or so. Met a guy who had just retired and bought a 40' something or other and was "goin cruisin". He was a couple of weeks away from taking off and was working on his boat one day when he suddenly died of a heart attack. The next day I cleared my bank account (all $400 of it), sailed out of the pass at Galveston, turned right and didn't stop till I hit Mexico. I spent three years sailing the Tx. and Mexico coasts... work a little, sail a little. Epiphany? Life is short... don't wait!!

#2. Mark, you may be familiar with this area. I was headed south down the ICW to Palacios in Matagorda Bay. There is a big half moon shaped oyster reef you have to clear before heading up into the bay. The barrier island lies just to the East. I had just made the turn to the West and was sailing along in perfect Springtime conditions. I just happened to look back over the island and was stunned to see a literal wall of BLACK cloud that had appeared from nowhere and was moving so fast that I had no time to react. Within a minute, this THING hit... hard. Went from 10knts SE wind with one foot chop to (yes this is true) 60knts+E wind and 5-6 foot perfectly square breakers. I was just cruising along under my jib... when it hit, the jib exploded into strips. With the square breakers from the aft and no sails up, the boat (a 20' Hurley...built for the North Sea and a good thing too) just rolled ahull. The bay is only about 10' deep and the channel to Palacios not much deeper. I was in serious danger of rolling and dismasting but... somehow with the grace of Neptune or whatever gods one wishes to thank, I just seemed to blow right up the channel towards my destination. About a mile or two from the cut into the harbor, the "thing blew over and the normal conditions returned as if nothing had happened. As I managed to get the motor started and putted into the harbor, I noticed that quite a crowd had gathered to watch my approach. I got tied up and collapsed in the cockpit exhausted and amazed. A guy appeared with a sandwich, a Coke and a Hershey bar and said," Man, we thought you were gonna be dead." I mumbled something like "me too" and gratefully excepted his gift.
The next day I called NOAA to inquire about this "thing". They said it was a complete fluke... a sudden low pressure trough that formed just off the coast and blasted inland so fast that there was no time to broadcast any warning. I had lived in Texas all of my life and new well the old saying that if you don't like the weather in Texas, wait a will change. As a result, I learned to NEVER take weather or sailing for granted or assume that any real threat will be broadcast in time for you prepare.
That was many years ago and I have encountered a lot of bad weather while sailing... some expected...some not.
Epiphany? Life is short... be careful!!

Glad to be alive,
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Old 27-05-2008, 14:30   #141
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There is a common spirit here. It is the will to live, and live on our own terms. My dad told me once to never burn any bridges. He said that to me, because of my behaviour. If it was a bad road to travel, and you burn the bridge. You can't go back, but you can go forward.


You could write for a living. A really wonderful post. Nothing would ever get done if it weren't for dreamers. A teacher once said to me as I gazed out the window. ARE YOU JUST GOING TO DREAM YOUR LIFE AWAY JOHN? My thought to him was YOU JUST DON'T KNOW.

I have done nearly everything I have wanted to do. Money was never a concern. Money was actually most of my life my last thought. It was being alive, and living to experience life.

My stepfather put the spark of sailing in me at 12. Although I was always fascinated by sailing. My mother shot that idea down with a simple sentence....WE WILL NOT SELL THIS HOUSE! The subject was never brought up again. Over the years I watched a wonderful man with a beautiful spirit slowly fade until there was no life left in him at all.

I promised myself at an early age. I myself would never let anyone kill my spirit. Someone was trying to choke the life out of my spirit in the 1980's. My life was like the scent of the lowest ebbing tide. A friend who had taken me on several day sailing trips on rivers, and lakes gave me a mercy berth on a trip to the Bahamas from Lauderdale.

We left late in the evening, We were on a Morgan 38, and all had gone to sleep, except my friend, and I. Years later I realized it was a perfect sail that night. My friend went down below, and put on Chris Cross's SAILING. He stepped into the companionway, and his eyes looked into the night sky. My eyes followed his without a word said. There before me was my friend, the full moon. Don said to me " can I pick them or what?" It was a beautiful night, warm, and lovely. My hands driving the boat, and within a second I had had MY DEFINING MOMENT!
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Old 27-05-2008, 20:56   #142
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You guys are kind. (Wonder if my big head will be able to make it through the companionway hatch?)
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Old 13-06-2008, 16:46   #143
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great thread....I'm 54 & the idea to cruise popped in to my head about 8 months ago; mentioned it to my wife thinking that would be the end of that & bingo!!! ...back she comes with yeah lets do it.!! so here we are
quietly getting our lives reorganized to get on a boat in just over a year
(you've GOT to have a goal/deadline we figure). we knew nothing about sailing but all my life I've been chasing adventures, so now its time to head out there together & hopefully(pretty sure) enjoy some great years together (..& meet all you other losers !! ha ha ) the cost of living on land is getting ridiculous & seemingly pointless(what, more stuff.....) I think we'll be amazed at what life is like when you take the 'want' out of the equation, plus we do have some nice cruising down here in NZ.
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Old 13-06-2008, 17:04   #144
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Good luck Rich. Ya got a keeper there. Ask questions on this board and you'll get some good answers. There is a fair contingent of Kiwi's to let you know about the cruising grounds around your country.
Fair Winds,


Between us there was, as I have already said somewhere, the bond of the sea. Besides holding our hearts together through long periods of separation, it had the effect of making us tolerant of each other's yarns -- and even convictions. Heart of Darkness
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Old 13-06-2008, 19:23   #145
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What a great thread with a ton of inspiration.

It is very refreshing to see so many people with the same thoughts as I have on cruising and the current state of affairs we call the rat race. I felt like I was one of the few with these views, glad to see I am not alone.
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Old 13-06-2008, 20:29   #146
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Great post Zach, and STUFF ain't the answer. A good partner (mine, a wife of 38 years)
and good communication makes for quality of life.

"Stuff" just needs to be dusted and maintained.

Steve B.
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Old 22-06-2008, 11:49   #147
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Great Thread

First off, Zach, I enjoyed your post so much that I copied it onto my computer. Thanks

While this isn't a post directly related to sailing, it is a post about what most of you all have been talking about.

I must admit, I have never read a thread that was 10 pages long, until now. In fact, I hate reading, but I thoroughly enjoyed this read. I enjoyed it so much, that I just bought 4 books from amazon (books that were recommended in this very thread). The only book I have ever bought was a textbook.

I feel very fortunate to have read this thread, and will "repay" it by adding my two sense.

I graduated from college in 2003, and began the rat race you all have been talking about. Well, I did that for 2 years, and decided I hated what I was doing and called it quits. I always had the desire to travel, but was too scared to do it on my own. I said to heck with my fears and moved to Alaska. It was a place I always wanted to visit, and I said, why not move there. While in Alaska I met some of the most interesting people I've ever met. I had a seasonal job as a bartender on a train. My fellow employees would work 5 months out of the year, and travel the world the other 7 months. They had a much different outlook on life than did my friends back home. My friends back home were busy with their careers, while my friends in Alaska were busy with their lives. Can you guess who is happier? I decided to live life like my Alaskan friends, and backpacked S.A. with a few of them. It was the best thing I ever did, and I will forever be a changed person because of it. There is something to be said about being able to do what you want, when you want, all the while learning about life and different cultures. I now understand why travel is so addicting. I think this and the love for the sea is what drives many of you. While I have never sailed the ocean, I feel I can relate with the feelings you have while out there.

For some odd reason, I decided to get back into the rat-race. Just recently, I moved back "home" and am now back in college studying something that interests me. I recently got an internship in my field and realize why I left my job at the bank 3 years earlier. While my new job will be more interesting and exciting, there will still be something missing. What is that you ask? Time for myself, friends, family, and dog. Time, time, time, and more time. Once I start work full-time, I will likely work 60 hours a week. While the compensation will be good, when will I have time for anything? Working from 7 to 6 each day doesn't leave much room to enjoy yourself and others. I remember what it was like when I worked at the bank (and I only worked 40 hours a week). Everyday I got home from work, I ate, watched some tv, played with the dog, and went to sleep. On Saturday, I took full advantage of having the time off and did what I enjoyed. On Sunday, I feared Monday. As an American, the average vacation time is 2 weeks. Sorry, but that just isn't enough for me. I don't mind working hard, but I feel like the "man" takes full advantage of us "common" people.

You might ask why I left my life in Alaska, after having "learned" so much. Well, as much as I dislike corporate America, I knew I had to make money somehow. Now that I know what life is like on the "outside" I can plan accordingly. I use to want that big house, nice car, and all the other useless luxurys that seems to run our lives. Now all I want is to get out of debt, own a small home, own a car that runs, all so I can save up enough to live my life, my way. I think Zachs joke rings oh so true, where the American was working his life away all so he could enjoy what the villager was doing.

In about 4 or 5 years, I plan on quitting my job to backpack the world for a year or two. After that I plan on working again to save up for my sailboat . Once I can buy that and have some extra money saved up for emergencies I plan on quitting and sailing the world. I do need to make sure I like living on sailboat first, haha, but I'm not worried about that. I'll have to work odd jobs here and there to afford the lifestyle, but it beats the heck out of not having the lifestyle at all. I just hope my plan rings true a lot sooner than later. I hope I don't fall into the trap and work my life away.

Well hopefully this post helps out some of you, like so many of the posts helped me.


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Old 26-06-2008, 12:50   #148
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I had never been on a sailboat in my life till I was 30yrs old. It was a date of sorts. This guy asked me to go sailing and I said 'Sure' never thought much of it but it sounded interesting.

The guy was a complete loser, but as soon as those sails opened up I nearly cried. I suddenly knew what I was going to do with the rest of my life!

I have crewed and scrubbed a few boats since then (shout out to Rick Moore of S/V Sophisticated Lady wow lots of freeboard!!)

Now I am 37 and I own a 1981 Hughes 31'8 (I know they have a bad wrap but man, you need to see my boat! She's awesome!) and I'm so ready to untie the docklines and chase the horizon.
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Old 26-06-2008, 16:07   #149
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On December 18, 2007, my brother, (who had never sailed), called me, (who had never sailed, either) and said that we should sail around the world, starting in a few years. 5 days later I put my house up for sale. When it sold in March, I immediately bought a Palmer Johnson Bounty II in San Diego, and have begun outfitting it to take off for Hawaii in November. My epiphany, and my resultant choices are definitely a result of my life experiences. In 2004, at the age of 19, I got hit by an RPG in IRaq and came back in a coma. I lost half my left lung and was generally pretty f'ed up. I got out of the Marines, and was a full time college kid/ full time motorcycle salesman. I feel like i'm a dead man walking, to be honest, and I don't want to waste a glorious second opportunity at life, and I was miserable in my past life. I was either going to die on a sport bike, end up in jail on a sport bike, knock somebody up, or waste my entire life for ****. I didn't want to do that. I saw my dad work himself literally to death. He died 4 months and 17 days after I got hit, from a heart attack, at the age of 55. He was a wonderful man, and I admire him in many ways, and loved him dearly, but he got a job, started a family and worked himself to death, just making as much money as he could. He was such a wonderful capable man, and could have done anything, but instead he spent his whole life working, and died a wealthy man as a result. I saw a t-shirt the other day that said "its better to live rich, than die wealthy" It was from a restaurant in oakland, maybe you know the place. I don't have enough money to sail around the world, so i'm going to film a documentary about my journeys and destinations. My brother and I have begun a production company and have launched a website, with logs, pictures and 1 short video so far. Our goal is to make money this way, to continue traveling indefinitely, and live life to the absolute fullest. He's miserable, in the Air Force in Hawaii, so im gonna pick up when he gets out, and take him with me. So, yeah, that's my epiphany.
solo sailing an engineless Cal 2-27 to Australia
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Old 26-06-2008, 17:55   #150
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Uhm...we have been working our entire life. Time for us. Taken the kids everywhere and still need our time. Last one a senior. 44 Gulfstar.....gone.

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